By Stephanie Malench
On November 11 and 12, Bobby Reidelberger has set a goal to bike at least 200 miles in 24 hours for St. Jude Children’s Cancer Hospital. Reidelberger, a paraprofessional at Dorris Intermediate School in Collinsville, was born with spina bifida, a rare birth defect where the spine and spinal cord do not develop completely.
Now 40 years old, Reidelberger has long exceeded the typical life expectancy at that time of 24 hours.
A lifetime paraplegic from Maryville, Reidelberger, is also competing in his second St. Jude marathon in Memphis on December 4 in a wheelchair designed for racing. This is Reidelberger’s first bike-a-thon.
Reidelberger will set off both days for 12 hours in a custom made hand-pedal bike from the Glen Carbon water tower on Old Troy Rd (behind Walmart) at 6 a.m. taking 4 different routes back and forth. Reidelberger said he is doing nine trips total each day on the routes, allowing anyone who wants to join him for a route and not necessitating permits from local communities to be on the MCT trails at night.
Although the routes add up to 112.8 miles each day, Reidelberger hopes to shave 1.8 miles off each day so the total will come to 222 miles, which breaks down to 111 miles each day, a nod to Veteran’s Day and the 22 Veterans who commit suicide each day.
Although Reidelberger normally averages 10-11 miles per hour, he plans to take a slower pace of 8-9 miles per hour so he can last the full 12 hours each day.
Reidelberger said although he has never had cancer, the races for St. Jude’s are his way of giving back for all of the people who helped him deal with spina bifida growing up.
Reidelberger has set a goal of raising$3,000 before the St. Jude marathon in Memphis December 4 and is already over half way there. https://fundraising.stjude.org/site/TR/Heroes/?px=6649869&pg=personal&fr_id=131089©_link_share©_link_share